Video Shows CNN Reporter Attacked by Raccoon Outside White House


A CNN reporter was trying to deliver news from the White House lawn when a raccoon decided to make a special appearance.

Behind-the-scenes video footage of CNN senior Washington correspondent Joe Johns fending off the raccoon moments before he appeared on CNN’s “New Day” went viral on social media Wednesday.

“Get!” he yelled before throwing what looked like a work bag at the animal to try and scare it off.

“Frickin’ raccoons, man. God, again! This is the second time!”

He added, “It always comes around right around when I’m going to go on TV.”

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“New Day” host Alisyn Camerota praised Johns for being a “consummate professional” in the “nutty news cycle.”

Johns replied to Camerota’s tweet, saying that one of the raccoons “slipped into a WH guard shack last night” and that the creatures are “unafraid of people at this stage.”

Gulf Coast broadcast personality Kenny Webster said, “These raccoons are obviously Republicans.”

This is not the first time that news crews have had to fend off raccoons on the White House lawn.

CBS News’ Paula Reid tweeted that a raccoon “attacked multiple news crews” on Sept. 28, allegedly grabbing a photographer’s pant leg.

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The White House has reportedly reached out to the U.S. General Services Administration to deal with the aggressive creatures.

Images from both instances went viral on social media, with jokes being made at the expense of the reporters and the president.

White House communications director Alyssa Farah suggested that perhaps raccoons should be added to the rotation of White House pool reporters.

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Erin Coates was an editor for The Western Journal for over two years before becoming a news writer. A University of Oregon graduate, Erin has conducted research in data journalism and contributed to various publications as a writer and editor.
Erin Coates was an editor for The Western Journal for over two years before becoming a news writer. She grew up in San Diego, California, proceeding to attend the University of Oregon and graduate with honors holding a degree in journalism. During her time in Oregon, Erin was an associate editor for Ethos Magazine and a freelance writer for Eugene Magazine. She has conducted research in data journalism, which has been published in the book “Data Journalism: Past, Present and Future.” Erin is an avid runner with a heart for encouraging young girls and has served as a coach for the organization Girls on the Run. As a writer and editor, Erin strives to promote social dialogue and tell the story of those around her.
Tucson, Arizona
Graduated with Honors
Bachelor of Arts in Journalism, University of Oregon
Books Written
Contributor for Data Journalism: Past, Present and Future
Prescott, Arizona
Languages Spoken
English, French
Topics of Expertise
Politics, Health, Entertainment, Faith